A Science of Forget

Double hour flash
open garden gate
shadows on the wall
rivers glisten in range
blips between the ears
Driveway salt eats
through warming ice
trees gray with January
viewed through wire mesh
brown leaves steadfast
old vessels before the eyes
oscillations unfocused
the inevitable right-angle
observations depart
Whatever gesture could
be more contrived
is expelled from quiet
mouths, half-hearted
grins, and what small
attention had been granted
is withdrawn, two weeks
coughed and sleepwalked
back to the distance
the persistent sweat and
grime, the template
pulled too soon

The next day
miles from shore
a soft hiss grows
louder and shapes
appear on the line
relative distance
between hands and
eyes lost in vapor
condensed, casement
windows perspire
A glint here and there
silver in the umbra
lag in their questions
and migrate unnoticed
to another universe
tripping over scuffed shoes
extension cords, wilted
branches moving still
wind crisscross birds
don't know where to go
and pause to think

Visitant mountain
hall accessed below
recognized gaps, closure
futile and besides the point
here the roots transpire
against each other
fighting for air, cravings
not as expected drive
a wedge between
intention and inaction
It was the wind
not mystery
that passed through
The dark cloud
low draws near
a fading sheen gathers
dust and the paint
cracks along the joint
foundations settle and
the cool calm demolition
gathers a thick undergrowth

Flying blind, the sun looms
in the left eye and recedes
slowly behind the freezing
Reality stalls, conceptions
shrink and fall short floating
headache pressure heartburn
stalks on the verge of panic
in the outland, elsewhere
words ring clear, nothing
particular, just the telltale
sign of something missed
a smoke wisp disintegrates
near the ceiling, the wind
has yet to start a song
The induced anxiety
of tomorrow rings
in a hollow stomach
unexpected minutes
settle, seconds smash
seconds, falling over
each other, pulled
too fast: no fruit
no trace, no indentation

A full index is recorded
waiting for analysis
a thousand relations
can be found from nothing
new developments before
their time are redundant
shedding no slant on
forewarned constrictions
One hour no different
from the next, wet pilings
in the cold harbor, diamonds
flicker off hazy prisms
a squirrel searches
for almonds, crows go
who knows where
the needles are no
longer green, the lawn
is not as dense, water
pressure drops unnoticed
and there's no idea here
that couldn't reverse itself

Icicles return toughened
rocks grind under tires
one full cloud parallels
the wind trace in fire
improvisations, the road
barely visible under grit
Coded backtalk escalates
past snow frozen rooftops
melting below the blanket
Walking into a brickwall
with eyes closed, stars
shine in dark eaves, fences
broken hide a little more
sense the difference, paper
doesn't cure, compressed
tones bow down and out
Always map the other side
first, nodes that vibrate
alone aggravate and distort
when pushed together: too
many colors turning to mud
The reordered pieces won't
focus the blur, clevering
only works for so long

Ocean floor tossed into
the mix, lost castings swirl
tidal pools all move to sand
there is more than the present
acid works up the chest
vocabularies are available
and this is no great shake
Wake up to action and try
walking on water, hovering
between the landscapes
that brighten and retract cold
wishing the wind away
heavy baritone reeds sway
over the human barometer
Minutes jitter and flit back
the ground cloudy eyesight
dull gaze heads forward
one set of laws exchanged
for another, shed the skin
footsteps lacking thought
vantage point removed
site of little or none

Backward from isolation
put on a musty overcoat
worn at the elbows, grimy
cuffs and buttons hang
by threads way off beam
standing water still held
frost suspended as usual
There may be nothing
left to count, an idle bucket
pulled up from a dry well
yields lost dust and debris
no more fierce than brittle
wasp wings from last season
Muddy boots crunch dirty
day-old snow hard and echo
off the glacial tree trunk
water rushes somewhere
stiff branches tower spiral
upright ice timeless crackle
from gusts and always fade
in the approaching exhaust

The blank forest emergence
invoke the presence
of the present, circulation
abandoned this morning
definitions stored in tin
buried nine-feet underground
A parched face screens hollow
croaks, investigate the siding
an ostinato of five events over
similar time stretch like words
on a slowly inflated balloon
rifts thick before understanding
Margins consent their secrets
but throw up barriers every
step of the way, a riddle moves
out of corners blocks the flash
with half-remembered hours
no closer to the clear space
where hints wait unnoticed
always changing aspects
no amount of insight can
revive the harvested field

Trailing off against sky
the dangerous lapse
into postures that refuse
to be forgotten, geese
that stick out winter make
a racket toward the oily stream
how many words does it
take to say nothing, how
much does the sentence cost
To live and die in an eight-mile
radius, the indelibility of always
returning, warmed over from
hibernation and inherited
authority too late, determined
not to make the same mistake
even if it takes a hundred years
Follow the gas and water mains
a sure sign, open the curtains
another window to stare out
in sentimental hindsight
waking in a foreign town

Return to the scene, well
ran dry, yellow flakes
flicker on shifting carpet
dog-eared parchments
turn around, strapped
into the progress the map
forms directions, one coming
one going abandoned and
chased moss rock overrun
defoliate decay the direction
the one is going, inches
piled up on the dirty sill
Corner leaf bunches, straw
pale afterlife, underside
shades oblique rain over
telephone wires after the fact
released in a trailed glance
bent and circumscribed
toward staccato tones
barely defined, the dogs
are always hungry

Traced to one event
many times over
a recurring framework
in cords plugged with
wood squares moving
through metal rivets
the musty book spine
crackles fast in tempo
A forearm sweats fighting
revival, unwilling the way
the foreground recedes
Study the gaping night
stars through floor slats
No stop-time running
forward, twisted beyond
recognition until reverse
lines call back, burnt
leaves fall, dimensions
gray smokestack fire
twilight measured ride
doesn't compute another
distorted wavelength chug

Now what, more red ink
spilled, pushing against
the wall again, no break
through the repetition
say nothing new in the past
present or future, not an
oasis but entirely different
from the ground up, for
the sum to change the sheer
weight will break eventually
the nonsense has to achieve
Look outward and document
the scene, wholly original
or not, the cycle veers enough
the only way most ingrained
habits need to be abandoned
surroundings don't matter
sound the same tomorrow
standing on edge the brink
the precipice the forever that
is sometimes or maybe never

Shot back from the cold river
again falls the rain, a minor
hint of events that are just
around the corner, the trees
are still and nothing has changed
but the second that turned through
cracks, static in one year, panning
for gold, there must be some there
skeleton backflip quiet the mind
and wait for something to float
to the surface, the other one
pulls through the sluggish fog
Tires still on ice, not yet done
in the slow rain and snow
can't reconstruct the night
The random pains return
spinning underworld weak
arms shaky vision can't focus
on the fragile pressure, chest
drops to the feet, hands can't
clasp the roots, nosebleeds
fingernails break, shedding
skin flakes, necks tighten

Consult the sphinx, linear
intervals are random and
should really know by now
the voiceless forward
firing from century to
century cut from the original
the definitive remaster
duplicated in its entirety
Glazed eyesight wow
and flutter, bright and dim
weighs evergreens down
dead leaves decay at the road
edge, wet telephone poles
asphalt saturation tire track
heat black shadows sway
memory pool outside in
dust smell sneeze further
reach lose shape substance
and particulars, the lunar
landscape a frontal retreat
clumps thaw fall fly off
the mother of pearl sky

Exit, the weight leads
to its own conclusion
and senses the reflection
in the dark of the screen
spend a little time on the hill
look at shoes and negotiate
the angles that claim worn
buildings and limp sap turns
to turpentine, forgotten again
chimes echo in afternoon
drizzle, the mark of an idea
ignored and shifted away
before it's too late to even
remember its shape, forget
the perfect moment when
every possibility lingered
off the sill undetermined
always barely seen behind
webs and branches that wait
for warmer film, shapes still
undefined in the headlights

One more today is enough
the outside lightens as noon
rounds the corner, the segue
is anything but smooth yet
necessary to follow through
the cascade thickens quickly
Assess the situation, search
for possible clues and better
suggestions that will save
the lawn, if the little finger
is unruly and won't accept
direction there is little hope
in finding home, recapture
the honourable gravity lost
in the din, skate the field
without depleting reserves
resist too much symmetry
bury the assumption, it will
find its way around as sure
as a quick look back shows
the stars come out unnoticed

Rain called back and rejected
in one move, too much
dependence falls through
ascending anticipation
disconnected moments
accept monetary travel
hold a handful of dust
while placed on the shelf
Accept affirmation before
denying escape, stretch
the blade to the back
resistence flourishes
frozen altitude deserts
against a porcelain sky
held by the neck while
motion held the trees
Face the sharp lights
ashtrays fall and future
days are frozen, listen
for the original and sweep
the carpet, teeth rot one
by four in the infirmiry
plans already made

Jump into the lake
excess fills foundations
and faces distress during
all phases of the moon
Drop by the farm, bats
chart the unknown move
cautiously toward the primal
Compose the first lines and
confiscate the last, chase
the white sparrow through
snow, turn the table
incense creeps along
the corners, resurgence
poured into circles
the open space moves
the evening, liquid nature
spirits prepare the wake
square the foam risen
sanity falls by the wayside
a home for spiritual materialism
before the slow felt knock
at the door, the singular lost
in stained glass visions
Start the end at the beginning
and undress for the truth
all in one movement

Leaves emerge again
hard in the breeze
thousands of years
and no richer in spirit
too much in another
world not real, green
shines down wandering
the halls for days, nothing
gained in the interim more
than a simple outgrowth
from the pile of worn
pants, a few full words
in flash floating forward
grey is forced back no
matter how hard the rain
falls, one of only a few
available doors, go home
The inevitable rising
washes away the will
melting into the horizon
not even halfway there
poised on the depths below
in a science of forget